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NHL Game Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Nashville Predators - 3/21/2019 - 8:05 PM EST
Posted: Thursday, March 21, 2019 by CapperTekSEO
Pittsburgh Penguins[2]
+1.5 (-200)
Over 6 (-130)
Nashville Predators[1]
-1.5 (+185)
Under 6 (+120)

NHL Game Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Nashville Predators - Date: 3/21/2019 Time: 8:00 PM EDT Venue: Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, TN, 37203 / The Nashville Predators have eyes on the Central Division title, even as they step out of their conference Thursday to host the Pittsburgh Penguins. Nashville (42-27-5, 89 points), which sits second in the Central, has won three straight games and is 5-2 since a loss March 1 to Winnipeg, the team the Predators are chasing for a division title." To be honest, I think guys are just starting to work harder as a team," Nashville defenseman Ryan Ellis said. "Everyone. All five guys on the ice. ... As you get into playoffs, everyone is going to have to do the little things, whether it be blocking shots, good stick lifts, taking hits to make plays. Whatever it is, everyone's got to do it. I think the last three games have been a good sign of that." Most recently, the Predators topped the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-0 Tuesday behind Pekka Rinne's 22 saves for his fourth shutout of the season." I think we're starting to jell," said winger Wayne Simmonds, who was acquired from Philadelphia in a Feb. 25 trade, one of several recent additions, along with Brian Boyle, Cody McLeod and Mikael Granlund." I think for us, we just needed to jell. I think we've had a little bit of time. We've had some practice time together. I think we're only going to continue to get better." Simmonds notched his first goal since the trade Tuesday, in his ninth game with the Predators." I thought I was never going to score again," he said. Rinne deflected credit for the win over the Maple Leafs." Really good defense," he said. Fox Sports Picks. That's something Pittsburgh (39-24-11, 89 points) could use, particularly late in games. In what began a disturbing trend for them, the Penguins allowed a late goal and then lost in overtime Feb. 23 in an outdoor Stadium Series game against Philadelphia. Starting with that collapse, Pittsburgh has allowed six goals in the final three minutes of regulation. Sports Handicapper Leaderboard. The most recent example came Tuesday, when the Carolina Hurricanes scored a tying goal with 1:56 left and then won 3-2 in a shootout." We'd like to think we can defend leads better," Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan said. "We have in the past and for a long time, and been very good at it. I know we're capable." The loss Tuesday left the Penguins 0-1-2 in their past three game. Football Tipsters. They also gave up a late goal and lost in overtime Sunday, again against Philadelphia. That's four critical lost points in four days as they try to clinch a playoff spot and perhaps gain home ice for at least the first round of the playoffs. They are two points behind the second-place New York Islanders in the Metropolitan Division and two points ahead of the Hurricanes, who hold the top wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. The Islanders have played one fewer game than Pittsburgh and the Hurricanes have two games in hand. There hasn't been one recurrent breakdown tying the late goals together." There's not a trend, I wouldn't say," Penguins goaltender Matt Murray said. "Each time there's been one little mistake. I have to make a save. That's pretty much what it comes down to." There has been a trend in the situation, however. Seven times, second-most in the NHL, Pittsburgh has given up a goal with the opposing goaltender pulled for a sixth attacker." It's definitely something we need to work on, especially in these tight games," defenseman Jack Johnson said. "There's going to be goalies pulled in tight games like this down the stretch and throughout the playoffs. We need to improve on that." --Field Level Media


Game Preview from The Associated Press (AP).

Copyright © 2019 The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved.

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